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Man faces charges for thousands claimed in assistance

WILLMAR -- A 28-year-old Wyndmere, N.D., man made his first court appearance Thursday on felony charges for claiming more than $21,000 in public assistance while working under a false name.

Isidoro Martinez faces two felony charges for wrongfully obtaining assistance and check forgery in Kandiyohi County District Court. Unconditional bail was set at $50,000 with conditional bail at $10,000. His next appearance is Nov. 2.

Martinez is also known as Bentino Narvaiz Jr. There is an arrest warrant for his wife, Sandra Veronica Martinez, on two felony charges of wrongfully obtaining assistance and violating the declaration requirements for public assistance. The complaint notes that the couple had lived in Willmar, but left the state and moved to North Dakota.

According to the complaint, the couple applied for assistance from county family services in October 2003. Their request was approved and as recipients of assistance, they were required to report income and employment to the county. Isidoro Martinez was listed as in the country illegally and therefore, not able to work.

An investigation, spawned by an anonymous tip, revealed that he was working under the false Narvairz name for Labor Choice since the third quarter of 2002.

His income was not reported, resulting in an overpayment of benefits of $21,065.32 between Dec. 1, 2003 and Oct. 31, 2006. Documents also showed he had endorsed several payments in the false name.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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